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Binary Web Services?


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Your best option is direct raw sockets (not to be confused with WebSockets, which are one level above that, while still being a level lower than HTTP).This however means creating an application that runs separately as a server, not as part of a web server, i.e. if you use PHP, you must run it from the command line, or better yet, use another language which supports threads/forks such as JAVA, C# or C(++).This also means that clients themselves will have to use socket functionality (e.g. PHP's stream_socket_client) to access your server, which may discourage some people to use it, unless you're planning on doing something really awesome that would be very inefficient if done as a SOAP or REST service OR someone creates a more convenient client (like what PHP's mysqli extension is for MySQL).

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Well, I'm still really fuzzy on the basics of "web services." I want to exchange a variety of data with a server including a library of image files. Right now I'm thinking of a C# desktop program using Net.WebClient and a host running ASP.NET. I have an example now running in C# using the Net.WebClient methods and it is able to talk to a small webpage, sending data via POST and then reading the resulting rendered page, but are you suggesting that this is an inefficient approach? Thanks.

Edited by davej
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